BOJ decides to taper corporate debt buying, scale back pandemic-relief funding

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FILE PHOTO: A man wearing a protective mask walks past the headquarters of Bank of Japan amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in Tokyo

TOKYO – The Bank of Japan on Friday decided to taper its corporate debt purchases to pre-pandemic levels and scale back some of its emergency funding scheme upon reaching the March 2022 deadline.

As widely expected, the central bank maintained its short-term interest rate target at -0.1% and that for 10-year bond yields around 0%.

The BOJ last year ramped up purchases of corporate bonds and commercial paper, and pledged to buy at a pace that increases the balance of its holdings by up to 20 trillion yen ($175 billion) until March 2022. It also put in place a separate loan scheme aimed at channelling funds to small firms through financial institutions.

($1 = 113.7200 yen)

(Reporting by Leika Kihara, Tetsushi Kajimoto, Daniel Leussink and Kantaro Komiya; Editing by Chang-Ran Kim)